Communication & New Media — from broadcast to narrowcast

A new and revised edition with new co-author Patricia Mazepa.

From Broadcast to Narrowcast, Canadian Edition

Martin Hirst, John Harrison and Patricia Mazepa

Firmly grounded in a political economy approach, this new Canadian edition is an innovative introduction to media and communication that examines issues of ownership, access, and control as technologies combine to create new hybrid technologies that are changing the way we relate to each other and the world around us. Expertly adapted to meet the needs and interests of Canadian students, this text maintains a global perspective while integrating Canadian research, data, government policy and legislation, and examples throughout.

Readership : Suitable as a core text for first-year introduction to mass communication courses offered at the university level, especially for those that use a political economy approach. Communication and New Media is also suitable for use in second- and third-year political economy of the media courses offered out of communications, cultural studies, and sociology departments.


  • Communication and New Media is a well-argued book written with conviction that introduces students to advanced theories in media studies, grounded in topical case studies from today’s new media landscape. . . . The text ably deconstructs the popular myths, both utopian and dystopian, that frame much of the discourse around new media, presenting a more nuanced and economically grounded analysis of media, and more importantly, its connection to broader social relations.”
    –Nicholas Balaisis, Concordia University

Table of Contents

Part I: Dialectics of Communication
1. Digital Dilemmas: Contradictions and Conflicts in Communication
2. A Political Economy of Communication
3. Contextualizing Technology: Convergence and Contradictions
Part II: From Hot Metal to Hotmail: A (Recent) History of Media and Communication
4. From Gutenberg to Global News: A Brief History of the Print Media
5. Industrial Light and Magic: A Brief History of Still and Moving Pictures
6. Telegraphy, the Talking Wireless, and Television
7. From Calculation to Cyberia: Computing over 2,500 years
Part III: Re-Emergence of Convergence: New Century, New Media?
8. The Golden Age of the Internet?
9. Policy Convergence: The Government Regulation of Communication
10. Who’s a Journalist Now? The Expanded Reportorial Community
Part IV: From Broadcasting to Narrowcasting: A Surveillance Political Economy
11. We Know What You’re Doing… The Surveillance Society Has Arrived
12. That’s the Way the Cookie Rumbles: A Surveillance Economy
13. Politics and New Media

Special Features

  • Political economy approach challenges students to examine the power relations that impact the production, distribution, and consumption of media and communication.
  • Canadian and international case studies help students understand how theories and concepts apply in the real world, both at home and abroad.
  • Timelines of significant inventions and events help students identify the connections among key developments in the history of media.
  • Engaging theme boxes highlight important research, critical issues, and relevant current events.
  • For Real? boxes explore controversial topics-such as labour exploitation in Canada; privacy issues and Google; and censorship-and raise thought-provoking questions to promote classroom discussion.
  • Focus on Research boxes explore how and why research on communication, media, and technology is conducted.
  • Ongoing Issues boxes discuss media-specific issues that persist through the history of media despite technological, social, or political change.

Instructor’s Manual
– Chapter overviews
– Student learning objectives
– Sample lecture outlines
– Key concepts
– Classroom debate ideas
Test Bank
For each chapter:
– 20 multiple choice questions
– 10 true-or-false questions
– 5 short answer questions
– 5 essay questions
– Answer key with page references
PowerPoint Slides
– Lecture outline slides
Annotated Web Links
– Links from the text
– Additional resources
E-Book (ISBN 9780199000531)
Available through

Martin Hirst is an associate professor in the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin University.

John Harrison is a senior lecturer in the School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Queensland.

Patricia Mazepa is an associate professor in the Department of Communication at York University.

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